THE sister of the man who was killed in a hit and run said her brother “could still be here” if the person who tweeted a photo of him phoned the emergency services.
Lisa Williams said that the actions of social media user Ikram Choudhury, 17, had condemned her brother Craig to death.
Craig Williams, a 35-year-old from Clermiston in Edinburgh, was found seriously injured on Ocean Drive shortly after 2am last Sunday morning after a car struck him as he lay sleeping in a bus lane.
Choudhury, rather than calling for help, stopped at the scene of the incident and decided to tweet a photo of Craig lying in the middle of the road.
Family and friends of Craig have now taken to voicing their anger at Choudhury on Facebook.
Sister Lisa, who lives in Barry in Wales, said: “If he had called an ambulance instead of taking a photo and putting it in Twitter my brother could still be here!”
One friend, Lisa Stephenson, said: “That is terrible, what type of person would do that I’m so shocked, it’s awful, lets hope he gets what he deserves the twat!”
Another friend, Gayle Sheppard, said: “Absolutely disgusting! Can’t believe another human being can behave in this manner!
“And for the person who drove off I hope you are ashamed of yourself! Accidents do happen but to drive off is disgraceful. I hope you find your answers Lisa.”
One friend who supports the Williams family, Deb Geach, even suggested that Choudhury should be thrown in prison for not phoning the emergency services.
Debby Wallwork, who worked with Mr Williams at the Marriott hotel, said: “Those were just vital minutes.”
It is believed that Craig had been out with friends in the Leith walk and Pilrig area before taking a bus to Ocean Terminal where it is understood he fell asleep in the middle of the road.
Choudhury maintains that he was only taking a photograph of what he thought was a drunk man lying in a road.
When he posted the original photo on Twitter he wrote: “Eeeehm wtf? Some guy just casually lying outside Ocean Terminal.”
But now after the backlash from the public the 17-year-old said he “regrets” not having phoned for help.
He tweeted: “RE: Unfortunate Incident I’ve just turned 17, not 19, I was the passenger in a moving vehicle not the driver. Reported. With Regrets.”
Tributes have continued to flood in for Craig and messages of support and condolences have been issued to the family from everyone who knew the Welshman.
Ms Wallwork posted a tribute online saying: “Craig was a cheery guy with a big heart, his Welsh tones shouting ‘hya’ would always bring a smile to your face.
“Craig was a dedicated and valued member of the team at the Edinburgh Marriott Hotel, often going out of his way to help others., and he would always make us laugh.
“There was no room to feel down when you were in his company!
“Craig has left a huge gap in our hearts. He is much loved and will be missed dearly by all his friends and colleagues.”
She continued: “Craig, I will miss you lots and will always remember you.”
Mr Williams was also a supporter of Cardiff City FC.
General Manager at the Mariott, Peter Dornom, said: “We will reflect in weeks and months to come and realise what a tragedy it has been.
“We have been deeply shocked.
“Craig worked in the house-keeping department but also across other departments. As I say, he was always willing to help.”
John Alexander, another friend of Williams, said: “Going to be missed big man, not gonna be the same walking past the smoke shelter and you shouting ” oi john boy, where’s the beach ?! ” Lol! RIP craig.”
Robert Melrose, another friend, said: “Sadly missed.”
A man who drives a silver Vauxhall Astra was contacted by police in connection with the hit-and-run.
The 25-year-old was questioned and fully cooperated with investigators before later being released pending further inquiries.
A preliminary report has been submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.
Anyone with information about this incident should contact Lothian and Borders Police on 01313113131 or the charity Crimestoppers on 0800555111.